The Wardrobe: How to Declutter and Refine Your Style
Living with less, to have fewer possessions but to use them with more efficiency and pleasure is a lifestyle trend which is being talked about in different spheres of life. This approach has even conquered the holy of holies of consumerism — the fashion industry. Stop buying everything you like just for the sake of it but acquire your clothes in a responsible and mindful way — this is the new message which stylists and industry’s insiders try to convey to their clients. Let us take you through some principles of sorting your garments, refining your collection as well as style at large. We will also touch on where in Cyprus you could recycle and resell your preloved items and raise some money from it.
Know Your Assets
Start by defining your personal style. Many believe that the sense of style is either inbred or cannot otherwise be acquired. This is not quite so. When the clothes suit their owner, fit well, make her or him look better and catch other people’s eyes, one speaks of an appropriate or stylish outfit. Stylish people know what and how to wear not because they have an artistic taste or money or have the latest trends at their fingertips, but because they are very familiar with themselves. They are aware of the merits and flaws of their built, they know exactly what colour combinations emphasise the colour of their eyes, hair and complexion, they know what clothes make them feel their best. Since personal style is inseparable from the person itself, anyone can find it. But how to discover it? The answer is to get to know yourself better. To do that three important aspects (and a complimentary one, which is no less fascinating) should be studied.
This is what defines the outline — length, width and waistline of trousers and skirts, dress cut, neckline, shape of the overcoat. Finding your silhouette is easily done by comparing various options.
Any stylist would tell you that it is best to base your wardrobe on neutral colours (it is the age of beige at the moment, for instance). Yet, everyone has their favourite colours, and in order to see which are most flattering, one just needs to take a good look at themselves armed with a mirror and a good lighting. Besides, there are different colour types of appearances. You might have heard about the principle of classifying appearances into four types after seasons according to complexion and hair colour and matching those four types to the appropriate colour palette. Well, it does sound a bit outdated and not in line with the spirit of acceptance, inclusiveness and ethnocultural diversity, but works nevertheless. Having identified your colour type you can cast aside any garments of those shades which definitely do not fit in your natural colour matrix.
Formal and sport shoes, bags, scarfs, hats — here you have to base on your habits and lifestyle.
White trainers, loafers and flats, classic leather sandals, chelsea boots and Dr. Martens, riding boots — all these look contemporary and appropriate nearly everywhere and always. Make sure to add fancy shoes of your liking with an interesting detail, however it should be compatible with your lifestyle and physical capabilities.
Look at French women who already in their youth invest in a Chanel bag. Its design remains unchanged for decades, so ladies will use it till they grow old partnering it with a little black dress, jeans, a fur coat or Converse trainers. The epitome of “Buy less, buy better” principle. Now, it may not be easy to find a model which would go with any occasion of your life. However, three classic bags (and there is plenty of shapes in this category including a shopper, a basket and even a bucket) of different sizes and high quality should do for all seasons and several decades.
- Scarfs and hats
These accessories are not only helpful against bad weather, they can also draw attention away from any particular features you don’t want to accentuate. Not only private detectives use them for disguise. Even if you have nothing to hide, a bright twilly can add a stylish twist to your hairdo, and a light scarf in “your” shade can emphasise the colour of your eyes without any make-up. Finally, there are people who just look great in hats, caps and panamas. And wearing them is not merely a bald fashion statement but a crucial means of protection against the Mediterranean sun.
4. Jewellery (a non-essential point, but highly exciting)
To tell the truth, jewellery is not that easy an area for finding your personal style. Not many can afford fine jewellery classics. The problem with fashion jewellery is that it is strongly affected by momentary trends making its owners look very much alike, which gets rather boring pretty soon. What is worth paying attention to and adding to your wish list is a so-called capsule jewellery collection. It can be collected throughout the whole life and include a variety of articles, such as: stud earrings adorned with precious stones, a string of pearls, a precious metal bracelet of a famous brand (which may and should be spiced up with trinkets, bracelets of sentimental value and souvenirs brought from travels), unusual hoop earrings of a medium size (although J Lo’s golden hoops are now classics, today’s designers have so many materials and techniques at hand that there is no need to get stuck on the trivial shape), a long chain with a pendant (even better if it is a heirloom passed down the family generations). You can add any fashion jewellery which expresses your character to this valuable base.
Having grasped the theory, let’s move on to the practical part.
Sort It Right
Fashion industry produces too much waste and refuse. Unfortunately, some of it lands in our wardrobes both metaphorically and literally speaking. Things we buy following trends or on sale or out of impulse amass. They are tricky to combine and often nowhere to wear to. As a result, a red alarm sign buzzes in our heads: with the wardrobe full of stuff there’s just nothing to put on. This only means one thing. It is time for a carefully thought-out cool-headed sorting. There is a number of techniques and recommendations. We offer some less common algorithms with long lasting effects which are directly related to finding your personal style.
Uniform and Luggage Principle
When embarking on a travel we often aim at packing our best outfits which at the same time have to be appropriate and comfortable. And all that should please fit in a modest sized suitcase! Why not apply this strategy to the everyday life?
Taking into account your physique and unique appearance as considered above, pick out clothes that suit you best and make you feel certain about your choice. Imagine leaving home for a week and make a set of interchangeable garments to wear during this period. This set should respond to all your daily demands such as business meetings, dinners with friends or business partners, city walks or visits to the country. Other scenarios could include taking kids to school or kindergarten, shopping, brunch, meeting friends or going to a museum.
A uniform comes to mind. And this is not as negative a concept as it may seem. All the famous and the stylish have their uniforms, even if you do not notice it at first glance. Having chosen your allies once and for all, you spare yourself the trouble of reinventing the wheel every day as well as save your time and money.
Here are the steps to follow. Put the garments on the bed, take a moment to think, remember days when you got dressed well in the morning and felt fantastic the rest of the day, put together a few looks. Lifehack: you may even save photos of outfits which turned out really well on your smartphone, so that you can overcome a mental block quickly next time you open your wardrobe. Ideally you should single out five to eight key items for warm and for cold seasons.
Summer sets reference:
Winter sets reference:
You can always add similar items from your collection to the chosen base. These should match the pieces of the sets you have put together and you should be sure to wear them often and with pleasure. That is, if you normally wear jeans or trousers and your basic top is a shirt, you can substitute it with a thin jersey pullover or a good quality t-shirt. Other easily interchangeable pairs could be a blazer and a trench-coat, midi skirt and culottes, a bomber and a denim jacket, loafers and white trainers, a handbag and a shopper. Extending your basic sets in this way you form a capsule wardrobe.
Removing the Hurdles on the Way to the Laconic Wardrobe of Your Dreams
The biggest enemies of a cohesive wardrobe are impulse buys and expensive sophisticated garments you have neither wish, nor occasion to wear. Purchasing pricey clothes and accessories, keep in mind that it is not an investment, no matter how hard fashion magazines are trying to convince us that it is. Only buy it if you really like it and would definitely wear it time and again. Even most luxurious and expensive clothes in pristine condition can hardly fetch more than 70% of their original price when being resold. There is only a handful of items which do not lose their value over time. And normally these are being sold not over the internet but at auction houses. Nevertheless, even if you won’t get a fortune, it is better to get a fair sum for your unused luxury clothes than shed tears over it getting covered with dust in your wardrobe. Embrace it, let go and give your possession a chance for a new and better life. We will tell you how to do so a little later.
Another hurdle on the way to the impeccable style is “lazy” outfits which we don every day not even trying to make a mental or a physical effort to dress better. Leggings and a shapeless jumper, skinny jeans and a sweatshirt are the usual suspects. True, it is a sort of uniform, however it has nothing to do with either style or personality. Put your inner critic’s hat on and sweep the excuse outfits aside.
If you know what you like, what suits you and works for you, yet your wardrobe is so full you can’t even close it, serial buys might be the problem. There is an eternal pursuit of ideal something — when we are trying to find that ideal white shirt or stripy top, perfect beige trousers, grey jumper or a slip dress. While working on their own, these pieces can easily be combined, so it won’t hurt to have a spare one. Perhaps. But the next thing you know there are countless variations of same garments towering on your shelves. Try analysing how many times you have worn clothes from the thematic sets, only keep the best combinations and continue your journey light.
There is another lifehack for those who find it hard to choose what should be tossed and what taken. Put some clothes into the farthest corner of your wardrobe for a few weeks and see if you can do without or even remember about it at all.
Where to Go with Your Excess Clothes and Accessories
Warning! You don’t have to throw anything away. Things you do not need may be used by other people or even save somebody’s life. Anything no longer good to be used can be recycled. Check this article for your options of textile recycling in Cyprus. In case you want to say goodbye to new things, designer items or barely worn pieces, you can raise some money reselling them. Here is how and where you can do so on the island.
Inexpensive items can be sold via local online platforms and social media. Marketplace on Facebook for instance conveniently sorts articles for sale according to geolocation and offers buyers goods matching their interests. Users look for value for money staples here.
Vintage. In general, local shops specialising in vintage deal in second-hand clothes from the 80s and 90s. They will be happy to take in pieces in the style of that period. You won’t get a fortune but will definitely support the slow-fashion movement. Clothing is evaluated by photographs and can be posted to different cities by any courier service.
The Сollective accepts on commission vintage and unique items in good condition. See here how you can restock the shop’s assortment.
Address: Palaion Patron Germanos 4-6, Nicosia 1010,
ZALOU works in cooperation with Agapi Charity Shop in Limassol. Normally articles are accepted as donations, however the staff might agree to sell your something special on commission as long as you donate part of the proceeds from the sale.
Luxurious fashion articles are best sold via specialised resellers. There is a few companies in Cyprus which would help you find a new owner for your expensive bag or designer trainers against a certain percentage. Sending in a picture is often enough to make an inquiry and get an estimate by the experienced staff of what you can expect to raise.
coMMISSIONshop + Men in Limassol trades exclusively new items by brands such as Prada, Chanel, Dior, Bottega Veneta, Jacquemus, Alexander Wang, Stella McCartney, Off-White, Max Mara, Balenciaga, Chloé, Alexandre Vauthier.
Reowned buys and sells bags and accessories, new shoes from main lines by Balenciaga, Bottega Veneta, Burberry, Cartier, Chanel, Chloé, Christian Dior, Céline, Dolce&Gabbana, Fendi, Gucci, Hermès, Louboutin, Louis Vuitton, Miu Miu, Prada, Rolex, Saint Laurent/YSL, Stella McCartney, Valentino.
+35725350065, Nikodimou Milona 27, 3095, Limassol.
D É J À VU accepts bags, shoes and accessories by Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Prada, Dior, Fendi, Gucci.
Vintage Foteini — vintage items and fashion jewellery from different periods and countries of origin.
Cyprus Collector — preloved luxury jewellery and watches. Pieces by Cartier, Damiani, Chopard, De Grisogono can be found here.
Hype Hub. The name speaks for itself. Here fashionable Off-White, Yeezy, Gucci trainers find their second life. And they do it so very quickly.
Once you succeed with the unclutter, reward yourself for the job done and fearless parting from what is no longer needed. The money gained from the resale can be used to get something you have always wanted, but sadly haven’t got the means for. It does not have to be new, but may your purchase be filled with meaning and accompany you for years to come. We hope this article could help you set off on a journey of mindful consumption where quality means more than quantity.